On Wednesday, The New York Times broke their own explosive news that Executive Editor Jill Abramson had been ousted and that Dean Baquet was sliding right into her spot.
In the NYT‘s story, here’s how they explained it:
“The appointment represented the second time in the last 11 years that Mr. Sulzberger has had to enact a surprising change in leadership. In 2003, he dismissed Howell Raines amid a furor over plagiarized articles by a reporter, Jayson Blair.”
And Politico‘s explanation of the same nugget:
“The sudden disruption marks the second time in just over a decade that Sulzberger has been forced to make a sudden leadership change. In 2003, executive editor Howell Raines was pushed out after reporter Jayson Blair was discovered to have serially plagiarized articles.”
Both stories were tweeted by the writers at 2:32 p.m. The NYT does not use time stamps, making it difficult to know which story ran first. As you can see above, they’re strikingly similar. And how meta…plagiarizing an anecdote about plagiarism.
Is Jayson Blair back in action?
Dylan Byers, who wrote the Politico piece, says it’s just a coincidence. Asked if he’d read the NYT piece before his ran, he replied by email, “I did not. I posted my story before the Times. The Times posted within moments of mine, so there’s no way they could have read mine. I think we’re just both making the same point here, which requires similar language.”
I reached out to NYT‘s Ravi Somaiya. He declined to comment, though The Mirror has learned that the similarity of Byers’ language was definitely noted inside the Times newsroom.